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Old 12-13-11, 12:28 PM   #1
mtnbud
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Columbia River Gorge Oregon Side?

Is it possible to ride from Troutdale to Hood River along the Columbia River Gorge without ever having to ride on I84? Google Maps doesn't show it, but I was thinking it was possible using the HISTORIC COLUMBIA RIVER HIGHWAY STATE TRAIL. Maybe I'd have to cross over to the Washington side at Cascade Locks?
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Old 12-13-11, 07:30 PM   #2
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Many people cycle the Scenic Highway but there is a segment past Bridge of the Gods that you'll need to ride on I-84. The WA side alternative is more wooded but has a smaller shoulder and high speed traffic. Bikes are NOT allowed on the Hood River bridge; supposedly some bus routes were going to be added (with bike racks).
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Old 12-13-11, 10:51 PM   #3
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You've got no choice except to ride on I-84 for several segments, but the shoulder (for the most part) is wide and smooth. I ride the HCRH every summer, part of a loop from East Portland (at the I-205 bridge) to Cascade Locks (at the Bridge of the Gods) and back. Here's the route: http://www.ohpv.org/events/bog/BoG.htm . Having ridden and driven both sides, I'd stay on the Oregon side if possible.
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Old 12-14-11, 12:38 PM   #4
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Thanks

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Originally Posted by Jeff Wills View Post
You've got no choice except to ride on I-84 for several segments, but the shoulder (for the most part) is wide and smooth. I ride the HCRH every summer, part of a loop from East Portland (at the I-205 bridge) to Cascade Locks (at the Bridge of the Gods) and back. Here's the route: http://www.ohpv.org/events/bog/BoG.htm . Having ridden and driven both sides, I'd stay on the Oregon side if possible.
Thanks for the info Jeff, especially the link to your route!

Thanks Greg - I didn't know the Hood River bridge isn't open to bikes - good info! Hwy 30 (Mosier/The Dalles Hwy) looks like it might be a nice ride to The Dalles.

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Old 12-14-11, 11:50 PM   #5
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Thanks for the info Jeff, especially the link to your route!

Thanks Greg - I didn't know the Hood River bridge isn't open to bikes - good info! Hwy 30 (Mosier/The Dalles Hwy) looks like it might be a nice ride to The Dalles.
It is if you like climbing!
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Old 12-15-11, 08:43 AM   #6
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I rode the gorge as part of a tour on the Lewis and Clark route. I carried a full load on my touring bike. I found it to be a beautiful route, and the strong tailwind didn't hurt! There were some parts where I had to ride on the freeway shoulder. It wasn't bad. There was lots of room on the shoulder, so I didn't feel unsafe, but it was loud! There are a lot of trucks. I missed the turnoff where the bike trail goes up and over - the famous place with the stairways with the grooves for bike tires. As a result I rode through a tunnel with a minimal shoulder. That was the scariest part.

There were two bike paths I rode on - one before Bridge of the Gods, and the other a little further east (I'm forgetting the name right now.) Both were beautiful! There was lots of climbing on the route. I remember one short jog on a surface road that went straight up and back down. At the time I was thinking I should have just stayed on the freeway. (I was carrying a big load.) Heading up the old highway towards the lookout building (again, names aren't coming) was a good climb, but the view at the top made it worth it. The climb up to the Mosier lookout was also challenging. Also, I crossed the Columbia to camp at Maryhill State Park in Washington. Then I stayed on the Washington side to head east. The climb up to Highway 14 from Marysville was steep (but relatively short.)

It was a great place to ride!
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Old 12-15-11, 10:01 PM   #7
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"It was a great place to ride!"

Good to hear BigBlueToe! I was toying with the idea of a loop tying in the Columbia River Gorge with the Olympic Rain Forest. Start near Portland, ride the Gorge, head to the Puget Sound area, around the Olympics and back. I'm not sure if that'll end up being my trip for next summer, but it's one I'm considering. I hear there's a 126 mi rails to trails being developed near Port Angeles?
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Old 12-16-11, 09:39 AM   #8
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I hear there's a 126 mi rails to trails being developed near Port Angeles?
Olympic Discovery Trail. Only parts are paved, but looks like you could ride the rest on a cross or touring bike with the right tires. Have not done it myself, but it's on my list.

Olympic Discovery Trail
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Old 12-17-11, 08:43 PM   #9
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MAPS: Here are some links to maps of the HCRH. The State of Oregon has a 16 page brochure and map collection...

<http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/HWY/HCRH/images/HCRHBrochure.pdf>

Here is another site..

<http://www.columbiariverhighway.com/columbia-river-highway-maps.htm>

I've done the Mosier Tunnels section and it's a fun ride (plus, no cars).

<http://www.traillink.com/trail/historic-columbia-river-highway-state-trail.aspx>
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Old 12-17-11, 10:55 PM   #10
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Thanks Toolbear!
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